The Program in Visual Arts introduces students to the studio arts in the context of a liberal arts education. Offering courses in painting, drawing, graphic design, photography, sculpture, film and video, and film history and theory, the program provides enrolled students extensive contact with an internationally accomplished faculty as well as access to state-of-the-art technical, analog, and digital labs, including a fully functional letterpress studio. The facility at 185 Nassau Street also houses the James M. Stewart ’32 Theater for 35mm and 16mm film projections. Screenings, at least three nights per week, are open to all students.
In addition to studio courses, the Program in Visual Arts offers three seminars in contemporary art and film practice and courses in film history and theory. Students who are interested in concentrating in Visual Arts can earn their bachelors in Art and Archaeology Program 2 with a focus on studio courses, or work toward a Visual Arts Certificate or the Film Track Certificate (which focuses on film history and theory). Program concentrators enjoy 24/7 access to shared studio loft spaces as juniors and spacious, semi-private studios as seniors. Throughout the year, student work is exhibited in the Lucas Gallery and in the James M. Stewart ’32 Theater as well in other traditional and nontraditional venues on campus.
Every year a practicing art critic arranges visits to artists’ studios and galleries in New York as part of the contemporary art seminar. Major artists and critics, including Will Allen, Edgar Arceneaux, Claire Bishop, Suzanne Boconegra, AA Bronson, Morgan Fisher, William Forsythe, Frank Heath, Mary Heilmann, Thomas Hirschhorn, Pierre Huyghe, Wangechi Mutu, Silas Riener, Tino Sehgal, Nancy Spector, Frances Stark, and Frank Stella ’58 have lectured at the University and have given critiques to Visual Arts Program students in their campus studios.